Who Plays Chip's Mom On 'Baskets'? There’s A Story Behind This Casting
During the premiere of FX's Baskets, Chip (Galifianakis) returns to his hometown and visits a number of places that make him feel like a total and utter failure after dropping out of French clown school. He also goes to visit his mother, Christine, at his childhood home. So, who plays Chip's mom on Baskets ? That would be '80s comedian Louie Anderson — who is male. It was a very conscious casting choice by co-creators Galifianakis and Louis C.K., they said during the Television Critics Association winter tour, according to the Los Angeles Times.
"I play this as a mom," Anderson told the press about his character at the TCA tour. "I used my mom as the base of it and added mean people I've met through my life." But, he did not want Christine to be over-the-top with a high-pitched voice, which he definitely succeeded at achieving; Anderson's character blends seamlessly into the show. "I wanted to really be Zach's mom and not make it cartoonish," Anderson continued.
According to his IMDB page, the 62-year-old comedian has appeared in stand-up comedy specials all throughout the '80s and '90s. He also appeared in the movie Coming To America, hosted the game show Family Feud, and created the animated series Life With Louie. If you're familiar with his stand-up, you're aware that Anderson sometimes dresses up like his mother for his comedy routines, so he's done this before.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Galifianakis told the press at TCA that he originally wanted to cast British actress Brenda Blethyn as Christine, but unfortunately, she was not available. So, when Galifianakis and Louis C.K. discussed alternatives, Galifianakis imagined Christine having a certain voice and explained this to Louis C.K., who asked: “You mean like Louie Anderson?" according to the LA Times.
The result? "We have a guy in drag, there’s slapstick, and we’re doing broad comedy things, but in a more toned-down drama universe," co-creator and director Jonathan Krisel told the press. And, it totally works.
Image: Frank Ockenfels/FX